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Ben Coulter

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Actuary

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I joined Sovereign because: I read the book “Reality is Crazy” and learnt about where Sovereign had come from and what a great culture it had.  After that point, there was no turning back.

Compared to my initial expectations: When I moved up from Wellington I expected all Aucklanders to be pretentious and bad at driving.  I quickly found out that pretentious isn’t in Sovereign’s vocabulary (but bad drivers are everywhere!).

What I like most about Sovereign as an employer: Sovereign is the largest life insurer in New Zealand and provides excellent financial security to its policy holders and its staff.  Through the Global Financial Crisis and the Canterbury earthquakes, Sovereign has been well capitalised to meet claims as they arise and still look after its staff.

Looking back over my time at Sovereign, what stands out as a particularly good experience is: Two things really stand out for me: (1) being involved in projects that were crucial to not only the strategic direction of Sovereign, but the life insurance industry as a whole; and (2) being recognised through Sovereign’s “Praise” performance recognition programme, which comes with a ticket to the 2011 Rugby World Cup final.  Yes, the final.

My advice to someone considering Sovereign as a potential employer is: Seriously consider it as you’ll get an opportunity to learn from some of the most experienced actuaries and insurance professionals that this country has to offer.

My role

What I love about my job is: Challenges motivate me and they just keep on coming at Sovereign.  There are also great opportunities to work with very smart people within Sovereign and across the CBA group.

What I enjoy doing on a day-to-day basis is: Walking to work.  Sovereign is located in the suburbs of the North Shore, so you can live close enough to walk.  This is not something that you can do with many companies the size of Sovereign.

What I value most about Sovereign is: It sounds corny, but it really is the people.  I’ve made great friendships here – I even met my wife here!

I feel fortunate to work for Sovereign because it is a very supportive environment, filled with a lot of positive and motivating people.

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